Keep Moving Forward: Lessons in life choices


“Keep moving forward.” That’s a line from “Meet the Robinsons”, one of my son’s favorite films. Whatever life puts in your path, keep moving forward. Whatever humps are in the way, keep moving forward.

Keep moving forward. No looking back.
No U-turns allowed.
(Source: Mary Englebrite art via Tumblr)

Whatever life throws at you, keep moving forward!

There are moments when I wonder what my life would have been like if I chose a different career path. [Cue: Flashback] I was a fresh grad in 1998 and was looking for a job. I was a Business Management graduate with a minor in Marketing. There were two kinds of companies I was applying for: advertising agencies and banks. Why banks? They had the most openings at that time, and seemed like a good fit with my course. Why advertising? I’ve wanted to make commercials since I was in 5th grade after seeing a NIPS ad (“You wanna see what happens in a bag of Nips? What goes on before they touch my lips? They make a rainbow…”).

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Always good food for thought.
(Source: Dribbble)

In September ’98, I was faced with a life-changing moment. I had a job offer with a bank and I was to start on the following Monday. It was hard to find a job at that time, and it was a relief that I finally landed one. But on the same day, I got a call from an advertising agency. Not just any agency. It was THE agency I really wanted to get into. But it wasn’t a call for a job offer. It was a call for an interview, on that same Monday when I was supposed to start my first job. Do I go for security or my dream (but still uncertain) job?

I took a leap of faith. I decided to decline the banking offer, and went for the ad agency interview. Two weeks later, I was working in my dream ad agency. Advertising introduced me to so many colorful characters, so many crazy worlds. It was a very tough start, and I cried a lot during the first weeks, but boy, it was a really great experience.

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Stay disciplined. Go the distance.
(Source: Pinterest)

I haven’t been really out of the industry since I joined in ’98. Even after my two years of being a work-at-home-Mom, I ended up in advertising. Again.

But there are times when I wonder about that What If’s. What if I had taken the banking job? Would I still be in banking? Would I be making more money? Would I have a more comfortable life? What if I didn’t return to advertising this year? What if I decided to join a different industry instead?

Those little questions pop in my head when I’m having a particularly bad day. It’s so easy to get sucked into the could’ve beens, would’ve beens, should’ve beens. Then I try to focus on the good stuff and I feel better.

I met my husband in an advertising agency we both worked in. One of my best friends is from my very first advertising job. One of my most trusted friends today I met in my current ad agency. Then I realize the value this industry has given me — relationships, friendships… soulful connections I wouldn’t trade the world for.

Lessons in life choices

It’s healthy, I believe, to look back and see where you once where and how you got to where you are today. A brief flashback, a brush of a daydream — these are little indulgences I permit myself to have. What’s important is not to dwell and be sucked into the ‘could’ve beens’. One way to avoid that is to be grateful for where the journey has taken you today.

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Walt Disney said it all.
Source: Presario Says c/o Flickr

Those moments come for me during bedtime. My husband and my son would be in bed, bathed in the glow of the yellow bedroom light. They’d be playing with a gadget together, or sitting side by side, my husband with his gadget, my son with his book, both dressed in T-shirts and plaid pajamas. My two boys. Every road and path I took in the past years led me to this particular spot, on the bed, under the blankets, with these two most special people in the world. I take a mental picture in my mind. Because as much as I’d want to save and savor this moment, the clock still sticks and time goes on.

The beautiful thing is, the journey continues. We keep moving forward, this time, together.

11 Comments on Keep Moving Forward: Lessons in life choices

  1. Ma. Teresa Grech Quiatchon Racal
    November 28, 2013 at 3:29 pm (11 years ago)

    I do have my own WHAT IFs in life. What if I chose to be a working mom, after I had my 2 older girls? Will my 2 older girls will be as good as they are right now in school? And a lot more, but as what you posted her, LIFE GOES ON, MOVE FORWARD. I guess each of us, whatever choice we have made, will never know that other part. But then again, I AM HAPPY THAT I CHOSE TO BE A STAY AT HOME MOM, I have every milestones of each of my daughters.This is one decision in my life that I know I made the right path to take… I so love this one… thank you…

    • Toni
      November 28, 2013 at 4:20 pm (11 years ago)

      Thanks for sharing! I wonder about being a work-at-home Mom. What if I hadn’t left the WAHM life? Would my son be healthier since I’m home more? Would I help him grow better? Those thoughts really cross my mind, especially on particularly bad days at the office. There’s a reason for all this though, why I’m working away from home. I do know what it is but sometimes missing the WAHM life can’t be helped. 😀 Thank you again for sharing! :)

  2. Riz
    December 2, 2013 at 6:37 pm (10 years ago)

    I love this post, Toni! I get those what if moments too, every now and then. Will we ever stop wondering about those what ifs? I fear not. I’m starting to believe that those thoughts will never stop crossing my mind. But like you, at the end of the day, I just have to know that everything God allowed to happen in my life brought me where I am now. And that’s the more important thing. Love this post! F na F ko. :)

    • Toni
      December 10, 2013 at 4:02 pm (10 years ago)

      Aww. *hugs* We’re in this together! :)

  3. Thomas Redmond
    August 8, 2016 at 2:24 pm (8 years ago)

    Hi Tony, you shared awesome and impressive moving article.

  4. Patrick Guthrie
    August 10, 2016 at 2:48 pm (8 years ago)

    You hit my favorite talking point. Appreciated.


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